After tennis champ turned homophobic minister
attacked transgender athletes in a sermon, lesbian tennis great Martina Navratilova volleyed back and accused the longtime rival of using religion to justify hate.
"Margaret Court is hiding behind her Bible as many have done before her and will do after her," Navratilova tweeted. "Let's not keep elevating it."
came out in 1981
, has publicly feuded with Court
. That seems an inevitability for two of the biggest tennis stars of a generation, one of them an outspoken social conservative and the other one of the most prominent lesbian athletes of all time.
But the substance of the recent disagreement seems especially notable as Navratilova dealt with her own disagreements with transgender athletes.
Court has come under fire for a December sermon where she went on an extended rant against transgender individuals. That included a common trope about trans athletes.
"And you know with that GBT, they'll wish they never put the T on the end of it because, particularly in women's sports, they're going to have so many problems," Court preached, according to
Bridgewater State University professor Matt Bell suggested Court's comments will likely spark protests at the upcoming
, which will happen at the Margaret Court Arena.
That prompted Navratilova's recent tweet.
"It's outrageous and so wrong," she wrote. "We don't need to change or re-write history when it comes to anyone's accomplishments but we do not need to celebrate them."
For her part, Navratilova said she has been consistent in a pursuit of fairness in sports. After this story was published, she tweeted that she has "never been not supportive of trans people in sports. But- it must be fair. And according to many transgender and transsexual people themselves, it's not fair."
\u201c@jacobogles Never been not supportive of trans people in sports. But- it must be fair. And according to many transgender and transsexual people themselves, it\u2019s not fair. So there is that\u2026.\u201d